Press releases

Alain Eychène, head of Research and Innovation at the French National Cancer Institute and head of the Aviesan Multi-Organization Institute for Cancer

16 Sep 2019 | By Inserm (Newsroom) | Institutional and special event



Inserm Research Director Alain Eychène is taking the helm at the French National Cancer Institute’s Research and Innovation division. In this new role, he will also head the Aviesan Multi-Organization Institute (ITMO) for cancer[1] and will manage Inserm’s Cancer institute.

Inserm Research Director Alain Eychène is the team leader for the “Signaling & Cancer Progression” research team at the Institut Curie. The major advances made by his laboratory include identifying and describing the BRAF gene, which mutates frequently in several types of human cancer, and discovering the significance of this oncogene’s role in melanoma progression.

From 2008 to 2012, Alain Eychène belonged to France’s National Committee for Scientific Research (CoNRS) and, from 2009 to 2012, was a member of the Scientific Commission at the Institut Curie’s research center. As Deputy Director of Science at the CNRS Biological Sciences Institute, he was responsible for oncological research and was a deputy director at ITMO Cancer until 2018. In his new position as head of the research and innovation division at the French National Cancer Institute, he is also taking over the management of AVIESAN’s ITMO Cancer.

“Research is one of the cornerstones in the fight against cancer. As the ten-year anti-cancer strategy to be prepared and implemented by the Institute is emerging, Alain Eychène and his teams will have to confront a number of challenges to further our understanding of the mechanisms of cancer development, particularly in pediatric patients and those with poor prognoses. Pooling the efforts of French National Cancer Institute researchers and Inserm researchers is a better way to rise to these challenges.” Prof. Norbert Ifrah, president of the French National Cancer Institute.

“Inserm is very excited about Alain Eychène’s new position. To fully assess the extent of the complexity of cancer pathologies, and to figure out how to confront the multitude of scientific challenges that arise in the cancer field, it is crucial to maintain a superior level of fundamental scientific research. Alain Eychène will guide ITMO Cancer along this path.” Dr. Gilles Bloch, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Inserm. President of the Aviesan alliance.

“The presidents of the French National Cancer Institute and Inserm are placing their trust in a biologist with a background in fundamental research, which is a strong message from both institutions to all researchers involved in the battle against cancer in France. I will attempt to build upon the experience of my predecessors in AVIESAN’s ITMO Cancer to take this research forward and bring its results to patients as quickly as possible.” Alain Eychène, head of Research and Innovation at the French National Cancer Institute and head of the AVIESAN multi-organization institute for cancer.


[1] The purpose of the Multi-Organization Institute for Cancer (ITMO Cancer) at AVIESAN (national alliance for life and health sciences) is to unite the research teams studying cancerous pathologies, thereby bringing scientific advances to people suffering from cancer, ensuring the excellence and competitive nature of research in France, and improving coordination among researchers by encouraging interdisciplinary discussion.

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